Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Popping out of my writing cave for a breath of fresh air

Sorry for blinking in and out of following blogs and returning critiques, but I've finally reached the end of completing the first draft of Sahmara's Sunset. When I get into novel writing mode, which has been rather rare these days, I go into hermit mode in my writing cave.

This particular novel has been a nine year process of rushing through 50K for NaNoWriMo, shelving it to finish Trust (and write several other novels), then returning to during two other NaNos to add more words, and now, finally filling in in the last gaps.

Some of the original bits are just plain horrible. A few even scenes made me laugh out loud. Sadly, they weren't supposed to be funny. Anything in those two categories has been rewritten. A third of the original text fell into the 'wow, I wrote that?' category. That stayed. The newer sections weren't half bad and the newest stuff is too fresh to objectively say one way or the other, but I feel safe in saying it's a good start at being a decent story.

One big issue is that I need a new title. I was so proud of myself for this particular one because I'm not usually (like near never) a title first kind of person. Apparently there's a good reason for that. The story has outgrown its original plot and, now, being more, needs something that fits better. This is going to be hard one to wrap my mind around changing because it's been with me for so long.

I have greatly enjoyed dropping into novel writing mode again, losing myself for hours in weaving another life in another world. It's keeping that momentum going that has been my big issue in the past couple years, which is why I've ventured into writing short stories. We're all about the instant gratification these days, aren't we? There's nothing about a writing, editing or a submitting a novel that's instant. Not that shorts are all that instant either in the submitting arena.

Much better notes were taken this time around as well as a summary outline of each chapter. With that big task out of the way, its time to spend some time with the summary and see what areas need to be expanded. I'd like another 10k to fully round out the story. It feels rushed in some places yet and the beginning needs some weaving work to mesh with the new end. Speaking of the end...

Sahmara's story was the first novel where I proved to myself that I could buckle down and finish a damn novel. Before this one, I'd been reluctant to write those words, scenes or anything resembling a halt to my merry rollick with my beloved characters in their world. But once I did write that ending, something clicked  and I discovered that finishing something felt pretty good and wasn't the end of the world I'd invented. Trust finally got an ending shortly after. Finally. And I was able to move on to other novels. Also, finally.

However, the ending I'd originally written for Sahmara no longer fit all the new meat I inserted into the missing middle of the story. So, join me waving goodbye to roughly 8K as it swirls down the drain. Bye bye pretty words. I do like the new ending much better so that takes the sting out of it a little.


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